Monday, February 28, 2005


The bible talks quite a bit about wisdom. And you'll see that there are two types of wisdom that are referenced - worldly wisdom and Godly wisdom. The following verses refer to worldly wisdom.

1 Corinthians 1:20 - "Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?

1 Corinthians 1:25 - "For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man's strength."

And these verses refer to Godly wisdom:

Psalm 51:6 - "Surely You desire truth in the inner parts; You teach me wisdom in the inmost place."

Psalm 111:10 - "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."

Proverbs 2:6 - "For the Lord gives wisdom, and from His mouth come knowledge and understanding."

Proverbs 11:2 - "When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom."

1 Corinthians 1:30-31 - "It is because of Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom in God - that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: 'Let him who boasts boast in the Lord.'"

This Wednesday we are praying for wisdom - Godly wisdom. The type of wisdom that is directly opposite worldly wisdom. The type of wisdom that is complete dependence on God. At the heart of such wisdom is humility. In fact, the person who thinks they have wisdom, probably doesn't. The world tends to equate wisdom with knowledge. I heard a pastor this week put it this way: "Knowledge is proud… that she's learned so much. Wisdom is humble… that she knows so little." We get so proud about the little knowledge we are able to accumulate in our lives. Shakespeare said "Man oh man… so ignorant in that which he knows best." In other words, even in the subject that I am most knowledgeable, I can't hold a candle to He who invented the subject. One last quote on knowledge. This comes from Mark Twain - "The problem with most people is not what they don't know… It's what they know for certain, that isn't true."

Have a great week and a great fast.
Your brother,

Monday, February 21, 2005


Jesus talked about hypocrisy quite a bit when referring to the religious leaders in His day. Yet even today, hypocrisy is one of the major criticisms unbelievers have of the church. A common claim is that the people who go to church think they're better than the people who don't go to church. It sounds something like "I'm not going to church. It's full of hypocrites." One pastor's reply to this is: "There's always room for one more." Think about this - to say "I'm not a hypocrite" or to point someone else out as a hypocrite is most likely hypocrisy.

What is hypocrisy? I heard a pastor talk about the origin of the word. It originated in the theater where stage actors would play 2 parts in a production. They carried a mask with 2 profiles. When they were the one character, they faced left. When they were the other character, they faced right. The term two-faced came from this. The definition of two-faced is insincerity, pretense, or a false claim to virtue. We put on pretenses to be associated with good characteristics that we don't possess... or to be dis-associated from bad characteristics that we do possess.

This Wednesday we are going to pray about hypocrisy. That we can get rid of any pretense or insincerity we may have. We don't want our hypocrisy to be a roadblock to the seekers in our lives. Our talk and our walk need to be consistent with what's in our heart.

Have a great week and a great fast.
Your brother,

Monday, February 14, 2005


Last weekend, our first visitor from back east came to see us. It was my high school friend Mark. He came out for 4 days and we managed to break away to ski for a couple days at Taos. So what things did I take away from this visit:

1. With enough threats to my older two kids, I can get the house whipped into shape fairly quickly.
2. Either I'm not as young as I used to be… or skiing got a lot more physically demanding since the last time I went.
3. Mark has a lot of questions / criticisms / opinions that stand in the way of him accepting Jesus Christ.

Before being saved, I was a like-minded agnostic with Mark. He was the first person I ever witnessed to and he was quite shocked the first time I revealed to him that I was now a believer. Invariably, when we get together, at some point he'll still say something like "So… you still going to church?". Loaded in that question is the thought that maybe I'm just in a phase and soon I'll snap out of it. After this past weekend however, he may never ask that question again. At one point he even said, "I can tell that I'm never going to win this argument. You aren't coming back to agnosticism." I agreed with him but it struck me as a little odd that he thought we were arguing. We talked about faith and God and Jesus for at least a solid 10 hours during his visit. We talked about everything from evolution to the big bang to the resurrection. He's not a believer yet but he went back to Pennsylvania with a lot of questions and things that he wanted to look into.

So what are we praying about this Wednesday? Any and all of the following:

1. Evangelism in general - that we are following the command to go and make disciples.2. For seekers - that they continue seeking until they find the one true answer we've found. Mark's question "So… you still going to church?" has a lot in it. First, it is a seeking behavior and invites discussion (or argument depending on how you look at it). Second, he's checking up on my faith - the fact that time keeps making my faith stronger may be the pivotal testimony in his conversion. You may be able to think of people who would get the same impact from your growing faith.
3. For us - that we remember what it was like when we were seekers. For instance, I remember thinking discussions were arguments back when I was seeking.

Have a great week and a great fast.
Your brother,

Sunday, February 6, 2005

Attitude toward enemies

This week we are going to pray for our attitude towards those we perceive as our enemies. Romans 12:14-21 is packed with wisdom on this topic. Wisdom such as the following:

"bless those who persecute you"
"Do not repay anyone evil for evil"
"Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath"
"If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head."

I heard a pastor put it this way - "The best way to neutralize an enemy is to make him your friend." Yet there are some people that it is so hard to imagine showing this kind of love and forgiveness to. Take Osama Bin Laden for instance. Yet Christ died for his sins the same as yours and mine and the same salvation through grace is available to him if he chooses to accept it. It's mind boggling to me and absolutely directly opposed to my gut instinct. This is definitely something I need to pray about and perhaps you as well. Remember, "He who throws dirt, loses ground".

Have a great week and a great fast.
Your brother,